Columbine Redux? Perhaps, but done better-One Breath Away-Heather Gudenkauf(5 out of 5)

A school in the middle of Iowa, on its’ last day before summer vacation.
A woman in bad shape with third degrees burns all over her body, in a hospital in Arizona. Her two children are in Iowa staying with their grandparents and attending this school.
A grandfather terrified that he’s not only let his grandchildren down, but also his daughter.
A police detective whose daughter attends the school, but isn’t there on this day. The detective is torn between her duties as a police officer and a worried parent.
A young teen girl trying to adjust to a life on a farm while wrestling with hormones and guilt over her mother’s condition and the part she believes she played in it.
Her younger brother, developmentally challenged and trying to navigate the world, with a very sick mother, an absentee father, and some ideas of merging his world with the real world that make the transition between the two precarious.
A teacher getting ready to retire and trying her best to keep her students safe.
A newspaper journalist who will stop at nothing to get that prize-winning story, even if it means putting lives in danger.
A missing ex-husband in a contentious divorce fighting for custody of his daughter.
A missing homicidal brother out to even the score against the sister who refused to help him get out of a jail term.
A missing man convicted of domestic violence against his wife.

Throw them all together…what do you have? A book you can’t put down. I read it, then I went back and re-read it again. The school in Iowa is under lockdown- there’s a maniac, with a gun, holding a classroom hostage. These sort of things have never happened in this sleepy Iowa town, and as a result, they are ill-equipped to deal with it. The police detective in charge of the case has to not only crack the identity of the person, but figure out how to infilitrate the school without letting the captor know they’re coming(see, this being a small podunk town in the middle of nowhere, they aren’t equipped with the state-of-the-art technology that most schools are now equipped with(after Columbine). The chief of police informs the detective that they suspect her embittered ex-husband of being the captor, and that tilts her whole plan of action on its axis. I’m not going further into the plot, in the hopes that you will simply pick this book up(when it comes out) and READ IT. Unlike Jodi Picoult’s 19 Minutes(a very similiar plot), this book is a quicker read, the action moves along quickly, and you get just a hint of characters. That’s enough, this book doesn’t need more! An excellent, well paced- suspense novel.


~ by generationgbooks on June 2, 2012.

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